Graphic Arts Industry Glossary
Table of Contents

Home
About Us
Services
Publications
Awards
Employment
Contact Us
Request Info

Fast Find
Loading

Drop down to the section of your interest, if your looking for something not on here drop us a line and we be glad to inform you.*** All trademarks or product names mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners.

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M
N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z


Packaging, flexible - Packaging using such films as foils, transparent films, paper, flexible sheeting, etc. to form a container such as a bag. The sheets that are carried on the cylinder under the jacket. They are approximately .012 thick.

Packing - In printing presses, paper used to underlay the image or impression cylinder in letterpress, or the plate or blanket in lithography, to get proper squeeze or pressure for printing.

Pad - To bind by applying glue along one edge of a stack of sheets.

Padding Glue - A flexible adhesive used in padding.

Padding - A finishing operation in which a flexible adhesive - called padding glue - is applied to one edge of a stack of sheets. When the adhesive is dry, sheets can be torn off individually. (also used to create notepads)

Page count - Total number of pages, including blanks and printed pages without numbers.

Pages per inch (PPI) - Number of pages per inch of thickness of a bound publication. Each sheet has two pages.

Pagination - Assembly of type with other line copy into page format. When done by hand, this is makeup or pasteup; when done electronically, it is computer aided pagination (CAP).

Palette - The collection of colors or shades available to a graphic system or program.

Pallet - Wooden platform used as a base for loading and moving paper and printed products.

Pam-bind - A prefabricated board cover with a clear plastic front and cloth hinge, inside which materials (up to 1/4" thick) are stapled or sewn.

Pancake Wound - The typical form of a roll of tape where each layer is directly on top of the next one. Also referred to as planetary wound.

Panchromatic - Photographic film sensitive to all visible colors.

Pantone Matching System (PMS) - A color matching system used to print colors according to a specific system of color identification known as the Pantone colors.

Paper distributor - Merchant selling paper wholesale to printers and other buyers of large quantities.

Paper dummy - Unprinted sample of a proposed printed piece trimmed, folded, and, if necessary, bound using paper specified for the job.

Paper Grades - Categories of paper based on such characteristics as size, weight and grain.

Paper master - A paper printing plate used on an offset-duplicator. The image is made by hand drawing, typewriter or electro photography.

Paperback - A book with a flexible paper cover, usually adhesive bound.

Paperboard - Paper with a thickness greater than .012 inches or 12 points.

Parchment - Paper that simulates writing surfaces made from animal skins.

Parent sheet - Paper distributor term for sheet 17 x 22 or larger.

Paste bind - To bind by adhering sheets with glue along the fold of the spine.

Paste drier - In inkmaking, a type of drier, usually a combination of drying compounds.

Paste up - To adhere copy to mounting boards and, if necessary, overlays so it is assembled into a camera ready mechanical.

Paste-down - That half of the lining paper which is pasted to the inner face of the cover.

Pasteup - The process of pasting up. Also, alternate term for Mechanical.

Patch proof - Add-on patch of corrected material onto completed blueline or color key.

Patent Base - In letterpress, a slotted metal base on which unmounted electrotypes are secured for printing.

Pattern - Sample or other reference to follow.

Pattern carbon - Special carbon paper used in business forms that only transfers in certain areas.

Pattern or Zone Coating - During the manufacturing process many PSA adhesives can be produced or "voided out" in specific "lanes" or zones in the direction of the unwind. Usually done to achieve an extended liner. Converters offer many creative options regarding such with any tape.

Pebbling - A process of embossing paper after printing to give a uniform ripple or pebbled effect.

Percentage wheel - Alternate term often used for Proportional scale.

Perfect Binding - A type of binding in which signatures are bound together with adhesive. This is used to eliminate the thread-sewing method of bookbinding.

Perfect bound - A style of binding in which all pages are cut and roughed up at the back or binding edge and held together by adhesive.

Perfecting press - A printing press that prints both sides of the paper in one pass through the press.

Perforating rule - A cutting rule that produces perforations.

Perforating - Any operation that punches tiny slits or holes in a sheet of paper or other substrate. Perforating is performed using perforating dies. Materials are perforated either to allow a portion to be easily removed (such as an order form or coupon), or to allow air to escape from folded signatures, which helps prevent wrinkling.

Perforations - Intermittent cuts in paper to facilitate folding or tearing.

pH Value - A number used for expressing the acidity or alkalinity of solutions. A value of 7 is neutral in a scale ranging from 0 to 14. Solutions with values below 7 are acid, above 7 are alkaline.

Photo typesetting - The method of setting type photographically.

Photocopy - Method of printing that transfers images electrostatically and creates them on paper with powder bonded by heat.

Photomechanical - Pertaining to any platemaking process using photographic negative or positives exposed onto plates or cylinders covered with photosensitive coatings.

Photopolymers - Generic name for a mixture of materials that can change physical properties on exposure to ultraviolet or visible light. With image-wise exposure they are used intensively as offpress proofing materials and printing plates.

Photosensitive - Characteristic of paper, film, and printing plates coated with light-sensitive chemicals.

Photostat - Process used to make positive paper prints of line copy and halftones. Often used as alternate term for PMT.

PI - Type mixed, and in an unstable condition.

Pica - A typographic unit of measurement - 12 points = 1 pica, 6 picas = 1 inch.

Pick up - Stripped up film stored in library to be picked up and used again with or without changes.

Picking - Printers nightmare that occurs as the surface of a sheet lifts off during printing. Generally a paper manufactures quality control problem.

Pigment - In printing inks, the fine solid particles used to give color, transparency or opacity.

Piling - In printing, the building up or caking of ink on rollers, plate or blanket; will not transfer readily. Also, the accumulation of paper dust or coating on the blanket of offset press.

Pin register - The use of accurately positioned holes and special pins on copy, film, plates and presses to insure proper register of its colors.

Pinholes - Tiny holes in the emulsion of negatives or printing plates.

Pinholing - Failure of a printed ink or coating to form a completely continuous film.

Pixel - In electronic imaging, a basic unit of digital imaging.

Plastic Comb Binding - A means of mechanical binding in which the pages are bound together by means of a plastic comb. This comb consists of a plastic strip off which extend a series of curved plastic prongs, which are inserted into drilled or punched holes along the binding edge of the pages.

Plasticizer Migration - When Plasticizers are omitted from a substrate and attack the PSA bonded to it. The PSA usually "softens" to the point of bond failure.

Plasticizer - A chemical substance added to plastic, foam, and other substrates to enhance flexibility.

Plate - A photographic emulsion coated on a rigid aluminum base used for reproduction of image on press.

Plate cylinder - The cylinder of a press on which the plate is mounted.

Plate finish - A smooth, hard finish of paper achieved calendering.

Plate gap - Gripper space. The area where the grippers hold the sheet as it passes through the press.

Plate - See Printing plate.

Plated die - Having a plated finish.

Platemaker - In quick printing, process camera that makes plates automatically after photographing mechanicals. In commercial printing, machine used to expose plates from flats.

Platen press - Jaw type, with two reciprocating platens, for printing or die cutting.

Plate-ready film - Alternate term for Flat.

Platform - A box with a base inside.

Pleasing color - Color that is satisfactory even though it doesn't match original samples, scenes, or objects.

Plugged up - Undesirable characteristic of printing when ink fills in around halftone dots, causing loss of shadow detail.

Plugging - Filling or bridging of halftone, type or fine reverses by too much ink or undercutting.

PMS (Pantone Matching System) - Color formula guide used in the creation of colors out of process screen combinations or matched on the press with a separate unit.

PMT - Abbreviation for photomechanical transfer, a Kodak trade name for a process used to make positive paper prints of line copy and halftones.

Pocket-volume- - A book whose cover is made with an inside pocket to house loose or unbound items.

Point - One thousandth of an inch. A unit of thickness measurement for paperboard. Measurement used to describe the width of a diecutting rule, 1 pt = 0.014 inch.

Polymer - A compound formed by the linking of simple molecules having functional groups that permit their combination to proceed to higher molecular weights under suitable conditions.

Poor trapping - In printing, the condition in wet printing in letterpress and lithography when less ink transfers to previously printed ink than to unprinted paper. Also called undertrapping.

Porosity - The property of paper that allows the permeation of air, an important factor in ink penetration.

Portfolio - Collection of best work by an artist, photographer, or designer for showing during meetings with prospective clients.

Position (tab) - Sequential location of a special tab in a bank.

Position proof - Color proof for checking position, layout and/or color breakout of image elements.

Position stat - Photocopy or PMT made to size and pasted to a mechanical showing how to crop, scale, and position loose art or photos.

Positive - In photography, film containing an image on which the dark and light values are the same as the original. The reverse of negative.

PostScript A sophisticated page description language, widely used in desktop publishing that is used for printing high-quality text and graphics on laser printers and other high-resolution printing devices. When an application program equipped with a PostScript printer drive is used, the program generates the PostScript code that goes to the printer. For most users, PostScript is invisible and automatic.

PPI - Short for pages per inch.

Preparation - Camera work, stripping, platemaking, and other activities by a trade camera service or printer before press work begins. Also called prep.

Pre-press proofs - See off-press proofs.

Prepress - Alternate term for Preparation.

Preprint - To print work in advance to be ready for inserting or imprinting.

Presensitized plate - In photomechanics, a metal or paper plate that has been precoated with a light-sensitive coating.

Press - A machine which performs the mechanical action of diecutting or printing.

Press arm - Feeds sheet or delivers sheet.

Press base - Base casting.

Press bed - Holds dies or plates.

Press check - Event at which test sheets are examined before production run is authorized to begin.

Press cylinder - Cylinder against which you diecut or print.

Press head - Platen (upper) which you print or diecut against.

Press number - A method of numbering manufacturing business forms or tickets.

Press plate - Jacket under which makeready is positioned.

Press Proof - A test printing of a few sheets, using the actual materials as a final proof prior to printing the entire job.

Press run - A complete production of form signatures through the press for binding to meet all customer requirements of quality and count.

Press set-up - Often called makeready.

Press sheet - One sheet as it comes off the press.

Pressure Sensitive - Adhesive tapes that stick to a variety of surfaces with little(hand) pressure applied. These tapes are usually tacky or "sticky" at room temperature and do not need activation by heat, water, or added solvents.

Pressure-sensitive paper - Material with an adhesive coating, protected by a backing sheet until used, which will stick without moistening.

Price break - Quantity level at which unit cost of paper or printing drops.

Primary colors - In printing inks, yellow, magenta (process red) and cyan (process blue). In light, red, green and blue.

Prime coat - A coating applied to the surface of a substrate to effect or increase the adhesion of subsequent coatings.

Print quality - A term describing the visual impression of a printed piece. In paper, the properties of the paper that affect its appearance and the quality of reproduction.

Printer - In printing trade, person who owns or manages print shop or runs printing press. In 4-color process printing, one of the separation negatives.

Printer-slotter - A machine used for printing and slotting corrugated or solid fibre boxes. It usually consists of one or two color units plus slotting and creasing knives. Printing is usually done with rubber plates.

Printing Plate - Also known as a plate, this is a surface that has been treated to carry an impression. Printing plates may be metal, rubber, synthetic rubber or plastic.

Printing trade customs - See Trade customs.

Printing - Any process that repeatedly transfers an image from a plate, die, negative, stencil, or electronic memory.

Process blue - Alternate term for Cyan.

Process camera - Graphic arts camera used to photograph mechanicals and other camera-ready copy.

Process Color - The four basic colors (CMYK, or cyan, magenta, yellow, and black) used to create specific colors through various combinations of the four.

Process inks - Inks in the four process colors.

Process lens - A highly corrected photographic lens for line, halftone and color photography.

Process printing - The printing from a series of two or more halftone plates to produce intermediate colors and shades.

Process red - Alternate term for Magenta.

Production artist - Person who does pasteup.

Prog boards - An assembly of progressive proofs, cromalins and other color guides into a single board used at press for color match and reference.

Prog - Short for Progressive proof.

Program - In computers, sequence of instructions for a computer. Same as software.

Progressive proofs (progs) - Proofs made from the separate plates in color process work, showing the sequence of printing and the result after each additional color has been applied.

Proof - A test image produced prior to printing. A test cut from the die.

Proof OK - Customer signature approving a proof and authorizing the job to advance to the next stage.

Proof sheet - Photographer term for sheet of images made by contact printing negatives.

Proof - Test sheet made to reveal errors or flaws, predict results, and record how a printing job is intended to appear.

Proofread - To examine copy or a proof for errors in writing or composition.

Proportional scale - Device used to calculate percent that an original image must be reduced or enlarged to yield a specific reproduction size.

Prototype - First in series of development.

Psychrometer - A wet-and-dry bulb type of hygrometer. Considered the most accurate of the instruments practical for industrial plant use for determining relative humidity.

Publish - To produce and sell or otherwise make available printed communication to the public.

Pull Slip - The instruction sheet to pull a complete bindable serial unit produced on Innopac.

Pulp - Mixture of wood and/or cotton fibers, chemicals, and water from which mills make paper.

Punching - To punch or shear.

Punching die - To punch holes.

Punching press - Press for punching or holes.

PUR Glue - Polyurethane-reactive hot-melt glue which is more flexible than older types of glues and is used as layflat adhesive binding. PUR glue is considered to be the most flexible and durable bookbinding glues on the market. They yield products that lie flatter and require less backbone preparation than other glues.

PVA Glue - PVA glue is applied cold; once dried, the resins pentrate deep into the structure of the paper stock, forming a solid bond.

Check out:
Quality Information Packaging -
Quality Looseleaf - Slipcases - Portfolios - Multimedia Packaging - POP
Tabs and Indexes -
Your Source for Quality Tabs and Indexes